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These pictures, mostly consisting of twisted and strained figures, represent the struggle to press against the picture plane. I try to convert color, shape, or line as a force which might break forward into the viewersí space. Faces and caricature are attractive as content, and serve to bridge the gap quickly between viewer and picture. There is a tension against the picture plane and there is a tension of attracting and repulsing the viewer.

Inherent in my portraiture is the conversation between a figure trying aggressively to burst into the gallery space, and the viewer standing in the gallery knowing that the attempts by the figure are ultimately futile, but nonetheless interesting. Meanwhile, since the form of the figure or face is active, it pulls the eyes of the viewer into the picture and gives the figure the opportunity to try and touch the viewer with its feet or hands, teeth, tongue or eyeballs. If they ever do succeed, like the caged animal confronting the visitors at the zoo, it would be a great achievement for a flat picture. This is my aim however often I fail.

A secondary level of appreciation is how the futility of such attempts affects the psychology of the personalities depicted. This psychology often reflects on me as the artist, and I am frequently asked why I make these kinds of pictures at all. I imagine the figures themselves asking me this question and slightly resenting me for placing them in their situations. While resenting me they try to keep a smile on their faces despite the strain for the benefit of pleasing and attracting the public. If not for the attention of the public, these pictures would have a very narrow existence in a storage rack.